In 2014, Graphic Science was commissioned by the Wellcome Trust to run a 10 month long leadership programme in public engagement for heads of academic departments working across the Trust’s research remit.
Each participant has a small seed fund of £2,000 to spend on activities that embed and support a culture of public engagement in their department/institute.
We recruited 14 heads to take part.
The programme began with a one-day launch workshop at Brunel’s ssGreat Britain where participants heard a range of different perspectives from other academic heads who described their experiences of doing and supporting public engagement. Participants also spent some time thinking about their departments’ own public engagement and how they could develop this and make it more strategic.
We were also pleased to welcome special guest speaker Eliza Manningham-Buller, former Director General of MI5, who shared her views on and approaches to leadership.
The programme then continued with remote support and visits to each participant to discover more about their and their colleagues opportunities and aspirations for public engagement.
Approaches have included developing a public engagement strategy, creating an internal public engagement small grants scheme and running annual community-focussed public engagement events.
The programme will end with a finale event during Cheltenham Science Festival.